Received a ‘managed migration notice’?

What should you do?

If you’ve received a ‘managed migration notice’ don’t ignore it.

You will need to claim Universal Credit within 3 months of the letter being issued. If you fail to make a claim for Universal Credit your existing legacy benefits will eventually stop.

The legacy benefits are: Income-Related Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support, Income-Based Jobseekers Allowance, Housing Benefit and Tax Credits

What is managed migration?

Managed migration is the last phase of the introduction of Universal Credit.

Rather than waiting for existing legacy benefit claimants to make the move over to Universal Credit because they have a change in their circumstances that triggers a claim, or because they are better off and choose to claim – they are starting to ‘invite’ people to move on to it.

But they are doing so slowly and do not expect this planned migration to be finished until the end of 2024!

Legacy benefit claimants chosen to be part of this process will be issued with a formal ‘migration notice’.

What should I do?

Speak to a Benefits adviser as soon as possible. They will be able to:

  • Explain the migration process and time limits

  • Work out the best time within the allocated 3 month window for you to claim Universal Credit and potentially maximise your entitlement to it

  • Explain what will happen to your existing benefits and discuss the swap to monthly payments

  • Work out your likely Universal Credit entitlement and provide tips to ensure your award is assessed correctly from the start

  • Consider any known existing debts that could be deducted from your Universal Credit award

  • Work out whether you could be entitled to ‘Transitional Protection’, and explain how this works

  • Ensure you are claiming all the benefits and extra help you are entitled to.

John is in receipt of Income-Related ESA, Housing Benefit and Personal Independence Payment. He contacts a Benefits Adviser when he receives his migration notice. After a chat, the Benefits Adviser explains that he should wait until after he has moved house (within the LA area) in a few weeks time before he claims Universal Credit. John will be entitled to Transitional Protection (TP). If he claims Universal Credit before the move then the increase in his Housing Costs Element will erode the Transitional Protection and will not receive any extra Universal Credit to help pay the increase in his rent.

Making a claim for Universal Credit

You should make a claim for Universal Credit in the normal way.
See How do I claim? for more information

But you might not be required to attend the Jobcentre:

  • You may be called into the Jobcentre, although they are also conducting interviews over the phone / videocall. If you are called into the Jobcentre for an interview you will need to attend.
  • If you cannot verify your ID online, then leave a message on your journal or, if you can’t access your journal, phone the Universal Credit helpline 0800 328 5644, and the DWP will call you and verify your ID over the phone instead.
  • If you need an Advance Payment you can apply for this online – but you will normally have to verify your ID before a payment can be made.

Your Jobcentre will know you have applied online: they will call you if they need to confirm any information with you in order to progress your claim.

Rashid made a claim for Universal Credit when he received his ‘managed migration notice’.
He claimed online and received a phone call from the DWP the following day, who took him through his claim and he provided them with evidence of his rent, and a photo of his passport..
He attended the Jobcentre to meet his Work Coach and discuss and agree his Claimant Commitment.

IMPORTANT: Some claimants may be better delaying making the claim – seek advice from a Benefits Adviser.

What is Transitional Protection?

Some claimants are worse off on Universal Credit – those claimants who are ‘Managed Migrated’ on to Universal Credit from the legacy benefit system will normally be entitled to ‘Transitional Protection’.

This means that they will – initially at least – be no worse off when they transfer across onto Universal Credit.

This Transitional Protection comes in the form of a Transitional Element that is included when the claimant’s UC is calculated.

If entitled, you must make your claim for Universal Credit before your final deadline day and provide all the requested information.

The claimant will lose the Transitional Element due to certain changes in circumstances.
And it erodes over time due to certain changes in the claimant’s circumstances and as the general level of benefits increase.

There are time limited protections for those Tax Credit claimants with over £16,000 in savings/capital, some protections for those students able to claim legacy benefits but not UC.
But there is no Transitional Protection if you are worse off under Universal Credit because of the Benefit Cap.

Evanna had been Income Support, Child Tax Credit and Housing Benefit. She is a lone parent with two small children – one getting mid rate care DLA. She was sent a ‘migration notice’ and so made a claim for UC.When the DWP compares Evanna’s ‘total legacy amount’ to her ‘indicative UC amount’, her ‘indicative UC amount’ is lower. So when the DWP assess Evanna’s UC award, they included a Transitional Element when working out her maximum UC amount.


I need help paying my rent

A Universal Credit award can include an amount towards your rent – called a Housing Costs Element.
See Help with your rent for more information.

If you are awarded some Universal Credit and it includes a Housing Costs Element then you may also be able to get additional support towards your rent through the Discretionary Housing Payment scheme.
See Discretionary Housing Payments for more information.

Melanie made a claim for Universal Credit when she received her ‘managed migration notice’. She’d been getting Income-Related ESA and Housing Benefit. He Housing Benefit was being paid directly to her landlord and she was worried about how her rent would be paid when this stopped.
When her Universal Credit was assessed it included a Housing Costs Element. She now pays the rent herself.

IMPORTANT: The DWP phone systems mean calls from them should display as 0800 232 635 but may display as other 0800 numbers, or an unknown number. If you get a call from an unknown number following a message in your UC account, answer the call as it’s likely to be DWP.

“I really didn’t want to do the wrong thing – so I made an appointment with a Benefits Adviser.
He explained what I needed to do and helped me think about how I would budget monthly.”